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Tybalt hasn’t been himself lately.
Our black Pomeranian has been out of sorts since his playmate, another black Pomeranian, named Nanook, had to be euthanized in July. Nanook’s health had declined rapidly and to the point he was in extreme pain.
Since then, Tybalt’s behavior has been a little erratic and more than a little heartbreaking.
At first Tybalt would go to the corner of any given room, facing the wall, as if being punished. Often he would leave us to go crawl in some small enclosed space he’d never been in, a closet in a room other than the bedroom or under a piece of furniture hidden by the tablecloth draped over it.
He would situate himself behind a toilet bowl or wedge himself between the base of the pedestal sink and the wall, again facing the corner.
On a few occasions Tybalt climbed onto the lower shelf of the bookshelf next to my bed.
For some time his favorite spot was the closet of our upstairs bathroom atop a flat, shallow container that gave him barely enough room to squeeze in. He seemed to want to go there every chance he got.
After a while my girlfriend, Rebecca Ricks, and I decided to limit his access to that closet.
We worried Tybalt was isolating himself and would ultimately be less social. We also worried about how lonesome he got during those stretches when we both were at work.
During all this time, Rebecca and I discussed the possibility of getting another Pomeranian, as much to keep Tybalt from being lonely as to provide another companion for us.
While we’ve looked at a few possibilities, we are being very careful about our choice. We know there are a lot of animals that need homes, and we want to make sure the canine companion we choose is one we truly feel will be the best fit.
In the meantime, we’ve been doing our best to help Tybalt adjust. That means rides in the car, when possible, walks down the alley and frequent attention when we’re around.
About a month ago, Tybalt scurried to the other side of the spectrum; he practically became a lap dog. And that’s saying a lot for the little ball of energy we’d often referred to as “the blur.”
Suddenly, Tybalt was curling up on Rebecca’s lap while she sat on the couch watching TV. Or he would jump up on the bed and stretch out next to me as I did work on my laptop.
Even when I shaved in the mornings, sometimes he would stretch out at my feet.
Sure, he found his way into my den closet occasionally, but for the most part, he now wants to be wherever we are. And we take that as a good sign.
The good thing is he stopped hiding so much. The not-so-good thing is he still sometimes rests his chin on my leg when he’s in my lap in a way that makes me realize he’s not himself, that he probably still misses Nanook. He does that to Rebecca, too.
We’ve been patient with our little companion, but it’s not surprising that we’ve worried about him. We know he’s had to adjust to a lot in a fairly short time, having been a rescue dog, having lost a leg and then having lost his buddy Nanook.
For now we can only do our best to give him a comfortable home and the hope of another friend. We know we can never replace Nanook, but Tybalt obviously misses having a pal around.
They say dogs are man’s best friend.
Sometimes dogs are dogs’ best friends, too.
Robert Villanueva can be reached at (270) 505-1743 or email@example.com.